NFL rumors: Kyle Allen could keep Panthers’ QB job, start vs. 49ers in Week 8


NFL rumors: Kyle Allen could keep Panthers’ QB job, start vs. 49ers in Week 8

When the 49ers return home to Levi's Stadium in Week 8, they could play against an unfamiliar quarterback. 

The Carolina Panthers reportedly will wait until Cam Newton is healthy to decide whether to start him or second-year pro Kyle Allen, according to NFL Media's Ian Rapoport. A Panthers source told Rapoport that Carolina's eventual win Sunday over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at London's Tottenham Hotspur Stadium would mean "Allen likely keeps his job as Newton makes a slow and steady return to the field from his mid-foot sprain."

The Panthers are now 4-0 with Allen under center after Sunday's victory across the pond. He has completed nearly two-thirds of his passes for 901 yards and seven touchdowns, along with no interceptions. Carolina lost both of Newton's starts, and he completed 56.2 percent of his passes with no touchdowns and one interception. Newton's yards per attempt (6.4) would be the lowest of his career over the course of a full season, as would his passer rating (71.0) and QBR (23.1). 

Whether Newton is healthy or Allen continues his winning ways, Week 8 marks the beginning of a stretch in which the 49ers play some of the NFL's best and most promising QBs. From then until the end of the season, San Francisco will see 2019 No. 1 overall pick Kyler Murray twice, Russell Wilson twice, Aaron Rodgers, Lamar Jackson and Matt Ryan. Drew Brees could return to the Saints lineup by the 49ers' Week 14 game in New Orleans, but Teddy Bridgewater has yet to lose any of his three starts in Brees' place. 

[RELATED: Jimmy G will embrace his role as long as 49ers win games]

The undefeated 49ers first have to worry about Jared Goff and the Los Angeles Rams this week before traveling to Washington to play against one of Case Keenum, Colt McCoy or rookie QB Dwayne Haskins in Week 7. 

But as long as Allen and the Panthers keep winning, Week 8 is a game on the 49ers' schedule to keep an eye on. 

49ers' Dee Ford injures hamstring, leaves Week 11 game vs. Cardinals


49ers' Dee Ford injures hamstring, leaves Week 11 game vs. Cardinals

The hits keep on coming for the injury-riddled 49ers. 

Edge rusher Dee Ford left Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals at Levi's Stadium after injuring his hamstring. 

Ford has played in every game this season, but he has been limited by nagging knee and quadriceps injuries. The San Francisco Chronicle's Eric Branch wrote last week that Ford has played in just 38 percent of the 49ers' defensive snaps this season, and Ford has not played in more than 50 percent of San Francisco's defensive snaps in a single game since Week 1.

[RELATED: Scouts reportedly not blown away by Kap's 'average' workout]

Still, Ford has been effective. Including Sunday's sack on No. 1 draft pick Kyler Murray, Ford has 6.5 sacks this season and given the 49ers' formidable pass rush another option for opposing offensive lines to worry about. 

The 49ers began Week 11 down three key offensive contributors (tight end George Kittle, left tackle Joe Staley and running back Matt Breida) and their kicker (Robbie Gould). They can now add Ford to their growing list of injured players. 

NFL rumors: Evaluators not blown away by Colin Kaepernick’s “average” workout

NFL rumors: Evaluators not blown away by Colin Kaepernick’s “average” workout

Colin Kaepernick showed off his arm strength in a highly publicized workout at a high school outside of Atlanta on Saturday, but the former 49ers quarterback reportedly didn't "blow away" any talent evaluators. 

Kaepernick showed he was "[good] enough to be on a roster, likely backup level" in the eyes of a "consensus scouting report" NFL Media's Ian Rapoport gathered, citing sources, but his colleague Mike Garafolo reported Sunday that there didn't seem to be much interest in Kaepernick. 

"He had to blow some teams away," Garafolo said Sunday on "NFL GameDay." "He didn't do that." 

Kaepernick's "velocity was real good" but his "[accuracy] and touch" were average, according to the scouting report Rapaport cited. 

Left unsaid in Garafalo and Rapaport's reporting is why Kaepernick needed to "blow some teams away," and it has little to do with his on-field ability.

Kaepernick kneeled during the playing of the national anthem before games in the 2016 season, doing so to protest racial inequality and police brutality against African Americans. The 32-year-old consulted with former Green Beret Nate Boyer in deciding to kneel, but some, including President Donald Trump, criticized Kaepernick for what they perceived to be disrespect of the American flag. 

The 49ers, under new leadership after coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch took over the organization, told Kaepernick he would be released if he didn't opt out of his contract. Kaepernick opted out but has been unsigned ever since, and he ultimately settled a collusion lawsuit against the NFL in February. 

[RELATED: 49ers' Breida, Kittle ruled out vs. Cardinals]

In a brief statement to reporters after Saturday's workout, Kaepernick insisted he still wants to play football. 

"I've been ready for three years, and I've been denied for three years," Kaepernick said Saturday. "We all know why I came out here and showed it today in front of everybody -- we have nothing to hide. So we're waiting for the 32 owners, the 32 teams, [NFL commissioner] Roger Goodell, all of them to stop running. Stop running from the truth, stop running from the people."

If Garafolo's reporting is any indication, Kaepernick might not get that chance soon.